Paul Walk's Web

Blog posts

An infrastructure service anti-pattern

Last week I outlined an idea, that of the service anti-pattern, as part of a presentation I gave to the Resource Discovery Taskforce (organised by JISC in partnership with RLUK). The idea seemed to really catch the interest of and resonate with several of those members of the taskforce who were present at the meeting. My presentation was in a style which does not translate well to being viewed in a standalone context (e.g. read more


There is still time to register for this year’s International Digital Curation Conference in London, although you will need to be quick - I’m told that registration closes on the 25th November. This year’s conference (the fifth), organised in partnership with the Coalition for Networked Information, has the theme Moving to Multi-Scale Science: Managing Complexity and Diversity. It promises to be an interesting event - see the full programme for more details. read more

Linked, open, semantic?

During an interesting session called the ‘Great Global Graph’ at the CETIS conference this week I formed the opinion that, in the recent rush of enthusiasm for ‘linked data’, three ‘memes’ were being conflated. These next three bullets outline my understanding of how these terms have been used in recent discussions, including the CETIS session: Open data: I see this as something expressed as a philosophy or, in more concrete terms, as a policy, such as that espoused by the UK Government. read more

Not ready to wave goodbye to email

Last week I posted a remark on Twitter: Can’t help thinking that the idea that Google Wave will replace email rather misses the point…. The first response to this echoed my view on this suggesting that the real nature of Wave is rather harder to explain or understand, and implying that people fall back on a frame of reference with which they are comfortable. It certainly looks as though Google have anticipated this and offered some easily digested marketing messages. read more

JISC Rapid Innovation Event

I have just spent an interesting and inspiring 24 hours at the JISC Rapid Innovation Programme meeting, which was organised by UKOLN (disclaimer: I work for UKOLN), and funded through the JISC-funded IE Demonstrator project. The venue chosen for the event was certainly an unusual one - the City of Manchester Stadium, home of Manchester City Football Club. I thought the venue worked very well for this event and would recommend it. read more

No data here - just Linked Concepts

Over the years I’ve found the ‘ Semantic Web’ to be an interesting though, at times, faintly worrying concept. It has never much impacted on my work directly, despite my having been embroiled in Web development since, well pretty much, Web development began. Of late I’ve tried to follow the earnest discussions about how the Semantic Web went all wrong because it was hijacked by the AI enthusiasts, and how it is going to be alright now because a more pragmatic paradigm has gained the upper-hand, that of Linked Data. read more

HEIs Get Facebook Fever (again)

Facebook rolled out its ‘ usernames’ function today. This is a new feature at Facebook which allows a user to claim their little bit of the Facebook namespace, along the lines of:[preferred_name]/ The process started at 05:00 am UK local time - on a Saturday morning - yet several people in my social and professional networks got up early to claim their personalised Facebook URL. Not all were successful despite this determination, and some ended up having to settle for some variation on their preferred username. read more

Celebrating Ada Lovelace Day - Pattie Maes

Some time ago, Suw Charman-Anderson introduced the idea of an Ada Lovelace Day, to celebrate the achievements of women in technology. As part of this effort, Suw also created a ‘pledge’ on MySociety’s excellent and innovative PledgeBank service, which stated: I will publish a blog post on Tuesday 24th March about a woman in technology whom I admire but only if 1,000 other people will do the same. In her blog post, Suw says: Women’s contributions often go unacknowledged, their innovations seldom mentioned, their faces rarely recognised. read more

Anything you quote from Twitter is always out of context

Brian Kelly posted Twitter Can Pimp Up Your Stuff - But Should It? a while ago. This post has caused me to think about courtesy and good practice. The aspect I want to talk about is Brian’s reporting of a conversation which took place on Twitter. I’m writing this to make a general point, not as a personal criticism of Brian who has well-established credentials as an experimenter with these technologies and who I know, from talking to him directly, is interested in these issues. read more

Smoke and mirrors, or good intentions?

Update: Karen’s presentation has now been made available. Yesterday, despite the best efforts of Worst Great Western, I travelled to the British Library in London to hear Karen Calhoun, Vice President WorldCat and Metadata Services at OCLC presenting on Working collectively – the way forward in an academic environment (not available online as far as I can tell). While Karen’s presentation was interesting it was, inevitably, mainly a sales-pitch for WorldCat, OCLC’s global-scale union catalogue of bibliographic records. read more

Designed by Paul Walk, built with Hugo
Copyright © Paul Walk. This website and blog are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License